Island risks and the resilience of a prehistoric civilization

T. Rowan McLaughlin, Simon Stoddart, Caroline Malone

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13 Citations (Scopus)
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Resilience in the face of uncertainty is a universal issue, but of particular concern for small islands where climate change and accelerated sea-level change are current worries. This paper investigates the issues of resilience and uncertainty in the case of prehistoric Malta, which at face value presented a natural environment fraught with many risks. The authors survey these dangers, especially the potential damage to food crops caused by soil erosion, to which the islands of Malta are particularly exposed. The prehistoric inhabitants of the islands nonetheless coped with uncertainty with enormous success as recent new excavations and radiocarbon dating have revealed that the elaborate periods of monument maintenance, for which the Maltese Islands are widely famed, has a duration of some 1200 years.
Original languageEnglish
JournalWorld Archaeology
Early online date27 Sept 2018
Publication statusEarly online date - 27 Sept 2018


  • Malta, resilience, island, MEditerranean, climate, vulnerabilities, soil, environment, Neolithic, Prehistory


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